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Easy Rider

June 18, 2010

Sadly, Lily’s milestones are sometimes constrained by my providing. Although she has been ready for some time, she could not move up to a two-wheeler with no training wheels until I scored one at a garage sale I accidentally drove by this past weekend. Once we had it, she was raring to go. We took her over to the Church parking lot (which must have seen a lot of bike-riding in its’ day) and suited her up. I would NOT have bothered with knee and elbow pads myself, but her dad insisted. Fortunately, no spills. Lily’s parents have divergent ideas about how to teach a kid to ride a bike, and since I hadofficially commissioned him to do it (hey, I taught him how to drive–a thing that spouses should NEVER teach each other should they wish to stay married–I say it is only fair that he teach the kids to ride bikes and drive cars), I gave him first crack at it.

The first 20 minutes he spent holding on to the back of her seat and urging her to “go slow” as they circled the church a few times. I saw him take his hand away several times, but never for long. They decided they needed a break–it’s hard work to ride a bike s-l-o-w-l-y. And I could see his back hurt. Fearing this wasn’t very fun and was afraid everyone was going to throw in the towel and not get back to learning again for a while, I roused Lily and told her we should practice for a few more minutes.

As soon as I had her up, I gave her the exact opposite advice as Baba: the faster you ride, the easier it is to balance. But Baba said to go slow. Well, go fast. Sure enough, I ran along for three strides and then she was off on her own. I shouted in celebration and Baba told me that you weren’t supposed to make any noise so the kids don’t know you let go. I kept shouting. And Lily kept riding. And riding, and riding, and riding. The only crying that occurred was when we had to pack up to go home.

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Of course, Peter needed to get in on the action, now that he can lay claim to the bike with the training wheels.

Don’t worry about Amos: he had puddles to splash in.

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. June 18, 2010 10:31 am

    yeah for Lily. There is so much freedom in riding a big kid bike.

  2. esodhiambo permalink*
    June 18, 2010 10:55 am

    You know, it FEELS fantastic, but I wonder how freeing it really is for kids these days. As soon as I could ride, I was off with the kids of the neighborhood riding around for hours while my mom really had no concrete idea where I was. Nowadays, I feel like that might be illegal to send my five-year-old off to ride her bike around town.

  3. Amy Thomason permalink
    June 18, 2010 11:10 am

    Is that a pink bike, Emily? Kate would be jealous; she must be content with red and then silver.

    I love the moments where being a parent is so much fun. That’s awesome for you and for Lily.

  4. esodhiambo permalink*
    June 18, 2010 11:28 am

    Like I said: garage sale. Believe me, it never would have happened if I had bought it new, but a bike in good condition that fit just right and didn’t have gears and hand brakes? I can do it for $10.

    I would be happy to paint it, though.

  5. June 18, 2010 8:29 pm

    Congratulations Lily! If Peter will be waiting for Lily to pass this bike on, you just may want to paint it:)

    Also, I think some little person may have smudged your camera lens, there’s a little blurry spot in the same place in each picture.

  6. esodhiambo permalink*
    June 18, 2010 10:17 pm

    Ah yes–the smudge is killing me, too.

    I am crossing my fingers for another garage sale find when Peter’s time comes.

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